Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Nets miss playoffs, get a playoff sponsor anyway

(Credit: Watchdog)

If the Nets ever do move to Brooklyn, I will be able to justify writing more about them than I do now, which in turn would open up all sorts of possibilities given their wacky marketing maneuvers.

For example: Last summer, they signed a sponsor for their offseason. That was strange enough, but now they have a sponsor for the playoffs . . . even though they're not in them!

The lucky company is T-Mobile USA, which along with the team will host a series of events through May 15 featuring players, former players, the team mascot and, most importantly, the Nets Dancers.

Click below for the can't-make-this-stuff-up news release.The Nets have teamed with T-Mobile USA to provide fans the opportunity to ‘Stay Connected’ with the team during the 2008 NBA Playoffs. It marks the first presenting sponsorship of a non-playoff team during the Playoffs.

Beginning April 21 and running through May 15, the Nets and T-Mobile will host a series of events in the New York-New Jersey metropolitan area in which fans will interact with team players Josh Boone and Marcus Williams, Nets legends, the Nets Dancers, and Sly, the mascot.

During the ‘Stay Connected’ period, T-Mobile will receive brand exposure on all Nets communications, including press banners, press releases, email campaigns and www.njnets.com.

“While we are obviously disappointed that we did not reach the Playoffs for the first time in seven years, we are committed to having our fans ‘stay connected’ with us by offering a number of exciting events and promotions during the Playoffs,” said Nets CEO Brett Yormark. “This initiative is a unique opportunity to create value for T-Mobile by enhancing its awareness to our fan-base and beyond in the number one media market. We continue to strive to be different and to provide unprecedented access to our fans, even on the rare occasion when we don’t make the playoffs.”

“T-Mobile’s partnership with the Nets continues to provide rewarding opportunities for our customers and the local communities,” said Jocelyn English, senior manager of sponsorships and promotions, T-Mobile USA. “The ‘Stay Connected’ program is a chance for fans to continue showing support for the Nets while enjoying the excitement of the NBA playoff season.”

In tipping-off ‘Stay Connected,’ the Nets have designated this week to be IZOD-Calvin Klein Week in which any season ticket holder who renews their seats for next season will receive 25 percent-off gift cards for purchases made at any Calvin Klein or IZOD outlet store through the end of the year, in addition to the already guaranteed early renewal gifts.

The ‘Stay Connected’ initiative will host a variety of special events including the opportunity for select season ticket holders to participate in a Porsche Driving School event and to receive special access to the NBA Store Spring Jam this month. Additionally, select season ticket holders will be invited to attend a screening of “Gotta Dance,” the new documentary on the NETSational Seniors dance team, at the Tribeca Film Festival on May 3. Also, select season ticket holders will be invited to a Playoff Viewing Party with Nets president Rod Thorn, special assistant to the president Kiki Vandeweghe and head coach Lawrence Frank. Select season ticket buyer prospects will be invited to a Playoff Viewing Party in a private sky box at the ESPN Zone. Other special events (space will be limited) for fans include tickets to a live taping of Center Stage on the YES Network, and access to play in a 3-on-3 basketball tournament at the Nets practice facility.

Tags: nets

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